Moriah / Carters / Wildcat Traverse

Memorial Day Weekend ~ Click below to view trip report
Elevation Gain

Date of Hike: 5/29/11

Carter-Moriah Trail: 13.8 miles
Wildcat Ridge Trail: 3.0 miles
Ski Trails (Upper Polecat, Middle Wildcat, Lower Wildcat, Wild Kitten): 3.2 miles
Total Miles: 20.0 (8,150 elevation gain)
- With the weather improving it was time to start hiking big traverses, up first the Wildcat/Carter/Moriah Traverse.  The first 8.5 miles I'd be hiking solo from Moriah to North Carter where I'd meet up with Alton and Patrick and hike over the Carters and Wildcats.
- On Trail at 5:30am, Moriah, 7:30am, North Carter 9:45am, Height 11:30am, Carter Dome, 12:00pm, Wildcat A 1:15pm, finished 3pm. Temps in the 60's in and out of the clouds with hazy views and light wind.
- I'm not a huge fan of the Carter Moriah Trail past Mount Surprise, it always takes me longer to get to the summit than it seems it should.
- From Moriah to North Carter would be my first time on that section of the Carter-Moriah Trail.  From Mount Moriah to the Stony Brook Trail junction is simply beautiful walking in and out of the scrub over ledges with terrific views of the Carters and the Presidential Range. I wouldn't want to be out there in the winter though, looks like it'd be tough to follow the trail in the snow.  I also really enjoyed the steep ascent up to North Carter which has a few tough scrambles.
- I ran into a bunch of people backpacking the Carters and Moriah along the way.  Some were happy but others looked spent and miserable!
- At the North Carter Trail junction I proceeded to hike at a solid pace over the Carters and Wildcats.  I stopped at Mont Height where views were good to the north but socked in everywhere else.
- The hike up to Wildcat and over the ridge drained me.  This hike has lots of elevation gain and it's over unforgiving terrain but I sucked it up and kept on moving.
- I took the ski slopes back down, staying on the Polecat Ski Trail for awhile then cut back across the mountain under the ski lift, and wrapped back down going under the zip lines.
- While heading down the slopes the Views across to Washington opened up make for some spectacular scenery!

 Carter-Moriah Trail heading away from Moriah towards the Carters

 Imp and Moriah Mountains from just below North Carter

Hiking down the Wildcat Ski Trail with Mount Washington in view

1 comment:

  1. Chris, I did this hike in the opposite direction on Thursday. On the Carter-Moriah I cleared lots of downed branches that were blocking the trail but also left a lot. Sounds like others may have also helped out with this. I only ran into one group all day - a group of 4 backpackers just past the Imp Shelter - they were having a tough time and were headed to the hut that day.